Staying healthy

Keeping the conversation going about mental health

Mental health awareness is growing. Review the status of mental health in America today and how you can find treatment through your LifeWise plan when you need it.
April 30, 2024   |   2 minute read
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Oddly, we can thank the pandemic for elevating the conversation about mental health. Stress and strain were at all-time highs for many families and front-line workers. Mental health care saw a surge in demand like no other time in our country’s history. 

High demand continued in the initial days following the national health emergency. While lower than peak pandemic levels, studies show that levels of anxiety and depression as a whole are still higher than pre-pandemic levels. When schools finally reopened, demand for mental health care surged again as many kids found themselves behind on social, emotional, and academic progress and overcome with anxiety and stress. 

Ultimately, the renewed focus on mental health in America is a good thing. Talking about mental health is an important first step in seeking care, especially for people who might otherwise feel stigmatized by it. 

Parity, another national trend

At LifeWise, mental health disorders are positioned on par with physical disorders. We consider mental health a key sector in our support for, and march toward, health equity. Mental health care coverage, including access to virtual care, is available with every plan we offer. 

The rise of virtual care technology (and its mobility and flexibility) is helping to improve access to care, especially with children in rural areas. (We can thank the pandemic for that, too.) With school hours, homework, extracurricular activities, dinner and bedtime, opportunities for kids to break away from all that for care are limited. Virtual technology can provide access to care for kids and families where they are and remove the inconvenience of travel, sometimes great distances. 

Virtual care, including Doctor On Demand is one of three ways to find mental health care through your LifeWise plan. 

Our Find a Doctor tool is another. You can also use that tool to determine if a therapist you are considering is in your plan’s network. 

Finally, there’s Kinwell Behavioral Health, available at statewide Kinwell neighborhood clinics and available exclusively for LifeWise members. Kinwell approaches mental and emotional well-being as an essential part of primary care. 

Getting better

Effective treatments exist for virtually every mental and behavioral health disorder. With access to the right provider and care, most people with a mental or behavioral health disorder can look forward to easing symptoms and more functional days at home, at work, or at school. 

Watching for the signs

As with any illness, the sooner you get treatment, the better the care outcome. If you see consistent patterns of any of the following symptoms in a family member or friend, consider reaching out to a mental health professional.

  • Feelings of depression or unhappiness
  • Mood swings
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion 
  • Excessive anxiety or anger
  • Change in sleeping or eating habits
  • Drug or alcohol abuse
  • Avoiding social activities

If you are experiencing a life-threatening mental health condition or medical emergency call 911.

For help with an emotional distress crisis: call/text 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline (24/7) or chat with a counselor at

Learn more about mental health care through your LifeWise health plan.

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